LSM Newswire

Monday, February 2, 2009

North America Embraces Australian Spoken Word Tour

North America Embraces Australian Spoken Word Tour

On 4 February 2009, four acclaimed Australian poets and spoken word artists will land in Canada to start their North American tour.

Alicia Sometimes, Emilie Zoey Baker, Justin Ashworth and Sean M Whelan, (all hailing from UNESCO's recently announced City of Literature, Melbourne, Australia), have been invited to perform in Montral at the 2009 Festival Voix d'Ameriques, and will deliver Australian showcase performances in Vancouver, Ottawa, New York and Chicago.

These are nationally renowned solo performers in Australia with years of publishing and performing experience at home and internationally.

The group of four have contributed much to the development of Melbourne's famously thriving spoken word culture, through organizing regular and special events, publishing, producing a literary radio show, and teaching in schools and the community.

As part of their travels, they will also be recording an audio documentary of American poets and performers for Australia's esteemed Radio National.

Tour Dates 2009:

4 February Vancouver, Spillious Speak and Sing

Featuring; Emilie, Alicia & Sean

6 February Ottawa, as part of the AB Series

Featuring; Justin, Emilie, Alicia & Sean

914 February Montral, Festival Voix d'Amriques

Featuring; Justin, Emilie, Alicia, & Sean

11 February Montral, Vanier College (tbc)

Featuring; Justin & more TBA

15 February New York City, The Bowery Club

Featuring; Emilie, Justin & Sean with special local guests Cristin O'Keefe Aptowicz & Shappy

22 February Chicago, The Green Mill Bar

Featuring; Sean & Emilie

The PR Contact regarding this Tour is Angela Gullace of Its Undefined in Melbourne, Australia

Justin, Alicia, Emily Zoey & Sean are all available for Interviews and Promo Appearances/Bookings

Promo CD's and Media Passes to selected shows are also available upon request

For any such related queries or for more information she is contactable via;

Ph: +61.3.9568.5102 | Mob: +61.400.171.196 | Email:

(Note: If calling internationally please note that the Its Undefined office has a 24 hour manned phone line)

About The Artists:

Justin Ashworth has released two independent CDs and a book of poetry, composed music for several short films, dance works and visual art installations. His spoken word performance is a mix of dark ambient music, with haikus as a mantra, and a surrealist tendency. In 2005 Justin published his first book of poetry and CD of spoken word called Fleeting Poetry. It was a collection of short poems about love and death coffee and the laundromat. It came with a CD of spoken word set to dreamy ambient music.

Justin's work also appeared in local independent poetry magazine Mod_Piece, and on a compilation CD/DVD put out by Melbourne's Electundra Festival. In 2007, Justin released the CD, New Music to Fall Asleep to... An electro-acoustic music and poetry exploration of the surrealist state of mind, and the potential for lullabies to invoke more than just sleep. It combined ambient soundscapes, odd rhythms, and a poetic imagination. In March 2008 the project toured Australia nationally.

As a guest musician and/or poet, Justin has been Involved in acclaimed Melbourne Fringe Festival shows "Seamstress" (2008), "Kunst Ist Scheisse" (2006), "Extreme Spoken Word" (2005) and Conan the Bubbleman's "Ephemera" (2003).

Alicia Sometimes is a poet, writer, broadcaster and musician. She has been published in Australia and overseas in such publications as Best Australian Poems 2006, Cordite, Verandah, Westerly, Heat, Poetrix, Short Fuse, Hecate, papertiger, Blue Dog, Overland, Meanjin, etc. She has performed spoken word over 400 times as a feature or guest at many venues, festivals and events in Australia, Berlin, London and New Zealand, including the Melbourne International Arts Festival, Melbourne Writers' Festival, Queensland Poetry Festival, Adelaide Fringe Festival, Melbourne Fringe Festival, Mildura Arts Festival, Tasmanian Poetry Festival, Sydney Writers' Festival, The Big Day Out and the Newcastle Writers' Festival.

Her first collection of poetry, kissing the curve was released in 2003 through Five Islands Press. Alicia conducted many workshops in cities and regional areas working with communities to showcase poetry performances. She has also been awarded residencies at Katharine Susannah Prichard Writers' Centre, Varuna and the Melbourne Aquarium.

She has had work commissioned for State Library of Victoria, Victoria Museum, Art Gallery of Victoria, Writers' Radio and the Red Room Project. Her work has been on radio many times both in Australia and overseas. She is currently a presenter on 3RRR with a weekly show Aural Text dedicated to playing spoken word and was a monthly guest on JJJ's Artery showcasing the best in spoken word from around Australia. In 2004 she was co-organiser of the first national poetry radio slam on Radio National. She was co-editor of the literary journal Going Down Swinging for seven years.

Emilie Zoey Baker has been a professional artist, writer and performer for over fifteen years. She recently received a scholarship to PoetryLab at the University of Wollongong to work on her second collection of poetry. She was the winner of the Nimbin Performance Poetry World Cup in 2006, a member of the winning team for the 2004 Melbourne Writers' Festival poetry slam, and holds slam titles around the country, including 2002 Melbourne Erotic Slam champion. In 2009 will be State coordinater for the National Australian Slam run by The National State Library.

She has featured at many venues and festivals including the 2007 Melbourne International Arts Festival ('Voiceprints' at La Mama), the Sydney Opera House as part of the NightWords Festival and a recent tour of New Zealand. She has been published nationally and internationally and was the producer of You Talkin To Me?, a Melbourne spoken word and music compilation CD. Her first collection of poetry, She Wore The Sky On Her Shoulders, was published in 2003 by Hit and Miss Publications. She has appeared on international radio and television and is just downright fabulous.

"This is great material find me one person who writes like Emilie and I will run naked through downtown San Diego this is exactly what I am looking for her work is fun to read and at the same time the content is very, very serious and makes for deep material to reflect upon. I have never seen such a perfect combination of these two elements in my life!" August Highland, Editor M.A.G (USA)

'Hilarious'-Australian Book Review

Sean M Whelan has been a writer and performer of spoken word, poetry and short stories for almost ten years. His written work has been widely published both locally and overseas. His spoken word performances have been broadcast on radio RRR and JJJ, Australia's National Youth Radio Station. In 2003 he traveled to New York as part of an Australia Council grant to perform at the launch of Short Fuse, a global collection of Fusion Poetry.

Since 2005 Sean has worked extensively with Melbourne rock band The Mime Set. Their debut performance was for the 2005 Melbourne Fringe Festival with a show titled Death To Your Dreams. It was a collaboration of poetry and music. Since then they have written two more Fringe Festival shows together, LCUK: Falling In and Out of Luck in 2006 and Sweet Cowboy in 2007. Sweet Cowboy was also co-written by Emilie Zoey Baker. In 2007 Sean was invited to perform at the Utan Kayu International Literary Biennale in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Sean also co-ordinates one of Melbourne's most popular regular spoken word events called Babble, held at Bar Open, Brunswick Street, Fitzroy. His first collection of poetry was published in 2003 by Hit & Miss publications titled Love is the First Hate. In 2008 his second book of poetry titled Tattooing the Surface Of The Moon is published by Small Change Press.

Alicia Sometimes, Emilie Zoey Baker and Sean M Whelan received support for the North American tour from the state body Arts Victoria and from the national Copyright Agency Limited.

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